Follow the Fullness of the Sea

Persistence Pays Off

by Rick Stecker

(This post first appeared on Substack as Follow The Fullness of the Sea – Subscribe here)

“And the sea will grant each man new hope, as sleep brings dreams of home.”

That quote, attributed to Christopher Columbus in the movie ‘The Hunt for Red October,’ offers the seafarer a hopeful image. But it’s not certain that Columbus ever actually said those words.

Nonetheless, Columbus did have a vision and knew what he was doing and where he was going. A seafarer from the age of 14 and a skilled navigator, he was familiar with tides and currents, winds and waves and celestial guidance.

He didn’t just put to sea and rush westward in 1492. He charted a course, with a calculated idea about the shape of the world, and a clear destination in mind. He just didn’t know how far he had to go, or how long it would take.

His purpose was mostly mercenary spiced with a touch of missionary. He desired to open new trade routes and capture wealth for Spain. New lands and new fortunes occupied his mind, although he would never receive any of it.

Columbus was a true explorer, guided by the spirit of adventure. Like many before and since he was motivated to sail unknown seas, break new ground, and find new prospects. It’s an instinctive capacity of the human spirit to seek out new territories, and to boldly go.

Once upon a time, I identified a small portion of that same spirit in me, the moment I put to sea aboard a Navy aircraft carrier deploying to the Western Pacific. Of course, many had gone before me, but it was my first.

I knew I would not see the same shores again for many months, and I was motivated to ‘discover’ the unseen that lay ahead. As dry land disappeared behind us, it became pure adventure.

At first, I gave little thought to the conflict that lay ahead, or the troubling political ramifications, or the possible difficulties. But in the end, the journey, or ‘cruise,’ as we called it, delivered everything. There was what would be enjoyed, and there was what had to be endured.

I will never follow such a course in the same way again, but in that time, I found new ‘worlds’ to conquer or at least experience. I once studied Shakespeare, but never thought a quote from him would apply here. Yet in “Julius Caesar” he wrote:

“There is a tide in the affairs of men,
Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
Omitted, all the voyage of their life
is bound in shallows and in miseries.”

In the tides and times of your endeavors, follow the fullness that the sea may provide. Receive all that it holds. Difficulties may appear, and obstacles arise, but persistence pays off.

About the Author

Rick Stecker is a personal growth specialist, writer and speaker helping entrepreneurs start and grow businesses. Rick's first job was as a reporter covering crime for a daily newspaper. Then came a stint on the high seas in Navy public relations aboard an aircraft carrier.

What followed was 25 years in corporate communications. Yet when a buyout forced a career change, Rick took his accumulated experience and built a consulting business, Grounds to Grow Coaching.

Rick authored his first book "Making Choices Like A Champion" to help others grow their capabilities. His second book, "The Chronicles of Mikey & Me" reflects on lessons learned out in the marsh with his first duck dog. In the works is Rick's next book, "The Benevolent Merger" aimed at helping those looking for personal growth to be victorious in their thinking. Rick's writings for the Internet can be found on Substack at ‘Rick Stecker’s Rising Tides’ ( Be sure to subscribe!

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